By Kevin J Sabo For the Advance
Greatest International Scavenger Hunt (GISH) has invaded Castor again.
The annual game, which is the brainchild of Supernatural star Misha Collins, was back for a ninth go around between July 28 to Aug. 4. During the weeklong event, many hijinks ensued here in Castor.
With the help of local friends, and GISH team members from across North America and one from Germany, Castor’s Lynn Sabo and her team completed 97 of the more than 200 challenges that were presented in the 2018 version of the game.
GISH challenges can vary from random acts of kindness caught on camera, to the utterly bizarre. Some of the challenges that Sabo completed with the help of friends this year include dropping off puzzles and flowers to the Paintearth Lodge dressed as a construction crew, commissioning a wall mural designed and overseen by someone under 10 years of age, three high powered women doing a mural of a high powered woman on an open door, to attending a local farmer’s market wearing an intricately carved melon on your head. A teammate of Lynn’s from Calgary completed a challenge by creating a picture of actor Geoff Goldblum out of cat hair.
All the challenges are assessed points, and the 15-member team with the most points will get an all-expense paid trip to New Zealand. Previous trips have seen teams travel to Iceland and a stay in a haunted castle. The trips are a nice perk, but that’s not why most team members do it.
“I GISH because it allows me to explore my creative side while giving back to the local community and worldwide because it’s about so much more than crazy tasks,” said Sabo.
Most join GISH to make a change in the world around them. Through GISH Collins supports several charities every year, and this year GISH partnered with Lucky Dog Animal Rescue, a rescue group that rescues dogs and cats from kill shelters and the global meat trade.
Collins also helped create the Random Acts organization, a charity organization based in the U.S. GISH and Random Acts regularly partner and this year some GISHS tasks were focused on helping them raise money for survivors of the Rwanda genocide.
In 2017 GISH managed to raise enough money to save 40,000 acres of rainforest, protecting many exotic and endangered species in the process. A portion of the registration fees for the annual hunt goes towards the year’s charities.
One of the most important things that GISH does is open the conversation on things that are happening in the world around us. One of the challenges issued this year was to create a picture out of used plastic straws, to highlight how much plastic ends up in the ocean and into the food of sea-life around the world, which is an issue which has the potential to affect us all.